Harvard Blog #9

Harvard Blog #9

We love Amazon.  Diana has bought every available kitchen gadget from Amazon there’s a constant stream of packages to the front door.  They make it so easy to spend money, just a large sucking sound or is it the click click-suck  on her computer.  I haven’t figured out the ever confusing passwords to my Credit card, so I am safe from the ravages of depleted bank accounts and the restructuring of international debt payments.

Amazon has supplied us with every thing for cuticle cutters to comfortable computer chairs, matching, no less. The chairs are a big improvement over the kitchen stools we’ve been using.  They are made in china, cost 85$, are delivered, and look like a TESLA. The multitudinous rolly wheels allow for a quick escape to a back room.

Of course, where would we be without a cleaning lady?  In a large pile of dirt!….

Diana has negotiated with a fine Brazilian lady to do a supper clean to start with.  Operating room scrub down type of clean. Cleaning ladies in the USA are paid quite well, right up there with lawyers.  I just hope DT doesn’t deport them all before our year is up.

We have made several foraging expeditions outside the flat, all walking to various food shops and hardware stores.   The ACE hardware guy (Al) has every conceivable bit of hardware in a store the size of a bathroom stall.  He puts Home Depot to shame, and knows where every thing is.

I am in love with the local Whole Foods store, as I linger over the raw milk cheese counter to titillate my olfactory senses, only to be violently grabbed by Diana, admonished and chastised “its not on the diet”.  Oh My God, to linger with a good ripe Limburger. The type that peels paint.  Its a love affair…



Havard Blog #8

Havard Blog #8

Oh yes, the “Snow Bomb” came with vengeance.  I do love it when every thing stops even the frozen Chihuahuas that were left out side by mistake with heir delicate little paw stuck to the plate glass door on frozen drool.

In observant reverence we did not venture out.  Quite sensible I think. Unpacked, that was the easy part. Setting up computers was quite another, lost pass words, lost wires and no internet..  Passwords are the bane of my existence! Even 16 character nonsensical Harvard Passwords. Designed to protect the user account from the user.  Its why we have “help”desks.

Well, the snow has passed and some cars are in a deep freeze as water flooded in on the Mass coast and then froze sold…but not us. Thanks to Canadian (AKA Montreal) training.  Snow is fun!

Our little flat is nice but with cheesy furniture.  I guess Students like it.  Not much of our “stuff”

We ventured out today….but first dig out car…UGH.  Then shopping, shopping and more shopping. Groceries, blenders, very sharp kitchen knives and many cuts washing it.Where the help desk when you need it?

The state of Mass as all but banned plastic bags, you know the kind that actually get your groceries  from the store to your home in one piece. Good solid bags are replaced with paper bags made out of tissue paper, Kleenex would have been stronger. The new eco-model tissue bag has a life expectancy of 3 seconds and are required to rip apart dropping the contents to he floor, smashing that glass bottle of olive oil.

This tissue paper bag stuff is a clear plot by the olive growers of Sardinia.

All this shopping is in aid of no wine for a month…and to endure severe deprivation and liver re-gen (nothing to do with electric cars).

Dinner: Zucchini spaghetti with shrimp and Ronesco sauce…don’t ask .. This one would have been right with you.  I do mis the oozing English muffin.

Tomorrow is another day….

Havard Blog #7

A move to Cambridge.

It started at 7:30 Am Wednesday Jan 3 2018, a clear morning I think. The sky was black-black.  It being so early that either the sun had gone out or we are in the middle of winter in Canada, where in the wisdom of governments we are subjected to delight savings.  If we have been saving all this time, don’t I get some back as a dutiful Goldie Oldie?  No. The scant sliver of daily sunlight in Northern climes is reserved for Kindergarten children who come home at 2:00PM while their parents are subjected to this merciless cold blackness.  I think hell was invented by people from southern hemisphere. Cold and black is Hell.

The drive started well enough with our little electric car struggling under the weight of Diana’s 10 suitcases,  I had exactly one suitcase.  I figured I could wash my underwear at at least once in a year.

Again I struggled with the concept of Border crossings and a car packed to the gills.  The potential of being made to take it all apart again to find that sliver of space required for Diana’s 7th carry-on bag. Cars are like airlines they only allow one carry-on.  Every flying woman boarding a plane I have ever seen has at least seven carry-ons.  To  my complete joy and possible orgasmic relief the Homeland Security Chap took our visas and passports, give them back and with a smile waved us on. Yes, he did.  God knows our car was so laden-down it could have been full of smuggled genuine Ontario Maple Syrup.  This being a complete falsehood because the real Maple Syrup suff comes from Quebec.

The roads and weather were fine.  Always leave before the storm. The American media was in anti-fake news frenzy as they reiterated the “Bomb Storm” was coming to Boston.  It seems the Meteorologists invent a new word for interesting weather patters every year.  Last year it was “A Polar Vortex”.  Do they think we are stupid?  Its a “Snow Storm” .  Thats it.

Our little Tesla surged on bravely and asked for electron feeding stops at regular intervals, which mercifully did away with the usual female banter of suggesting that driver (me) needs a coffee.  The phrase is a common feature in the female of the species, and translates to,“stop the car I want to pee”.   Now, I went to an all boys school, where we learn with avid ardour the nuances of women.  We males, after many years, have  learnt this turn of phrase, if not at our peril.

Diana had an uncontrollable urge to use her 15,000 words/day as we drove down from Toronto.  The unbridled loquaciousness all started by reading out loud every single road signs to me as we drove for 1000 kilometres.  Men can actually drive a car with out talking…all the time!.  We just think dirty thoughts to stay awake.

However, in her defence she did buy food at one of the charging stops in preparation for the “Bomb Storm” so yesterday we set up house.  The down side is the food selection.  No English muffins and Marmalade oozing with butter.  Diana has decided we are on a diet for 30 days. The worst of which is, no wine…at all…Oh My God, I don’t beleive it!  How will I ever survive?

Arrived at 10:30 PM un-packed car and slid into cold sheets to dream about the ensuing “Snow Bomb”.


Harvard Blog #6

The last day of orientation began at 6:15 in a darkened house dark and cold street with overcast black skies. It seems to me we were the only people stupid enough to move out of the Charles Hotel and into our apartment. The Charles hotel was very posh and also very expensive.

Freshmen students should suffer. It’s a given.

The Charles hotel have redeemed themselves from fire alarm fantasy by returning lost bundles of cash.

We were whisked off to the HBS, yes another acronym Harvard business school for a breakfast of muffins and yoghurt all quite good.

Rising at ungodly hour in the black requires vast quantities of potent coffee the downside of that is that you have a tendency to Pee a lot. I am now familiar with every public private and otherwise washroom in a 10 mile radius of Harvard Square.

ALI explained the nuances of Harvard and when classes actually start. The things that we must do to be totally prepared. Sitting in a room of triple type As is a very difficult exercise for someone to shy as I am. However, I did get to ask one question where the washroom was.

Lunch was served in the room the size of a small Gothic cathedral with a commensurate ceiling height and being absolutely cold where the people are. I am told that the room was heated.

Off to dinner with Will Robbie Carling and Jeff. This should be a great lark as we lurch into the darkness of Cambridge.

I shall report back tomorrow after my hangover clears.

We are back in Toronto tomorrow night.